Council Meeting Highlights: October 4, 2021
Permissive Tax Exemptions are a way for the municipality to provide financial support for organizations that make an important contribution to West Vancouver. Provincial legislation automatically provides a ”statutory” property exemption for places of worship, but that exemption only applies to the buildings and the land on which those buildings sit. A “permissive” tax exemption is an additional exemption granted by Council, which applies to the surrounding lands and structures.
Other properties used for charitable purposes (i.e. not places of worship) also qualify for permissive tax exemptions.
Since the amount of taxation Council approves each year equals the amount required to balance the municipal budget, any tax exemption granted to specific taxpayers results in a shift of these taxes onto remaining taxpayers.
To obtain an exemption, non-profits and places of worship must apply every year, and Council approves the requests through a bylaw. The Permissive Tax Exemption Policy sets out the requirements an organization must meet to qualify for a permissive tax exemption, including making important contributions to West Vancouver in the areas of:
- social development
- economic development
- protection of the natural environment
- promotion of arts and culture
- other community goals and District policy goals
Council approved 2022 permissive tax exemptions for 14 places of worship, five senior citizen housing societies, and three properties supporting non-profit organizations. The total exemption amount equals an estimated $320,000 in subsidies.
Council read the bylaw a first, second, and third time.
The four lots at 671, 685, 693 Clyde Avenue and 694 Duchess Avenue form a larger L-shaped lot north of Park Royal’s northeast parkade. The lots on Clyde Avenue are empty. The Duchess Avenue lot is the adjoining embankment with vegetation parallel to the north-bound Taylor Way on-ramp exiting Park Royal.
These four legal lots are the subject of a preliminary proposal that would require rezoning if it were to proceed. At this stage, staff evaluate the proposal to determine if it merits further consideration, including public consultation and detailed staff input before proceeding to the formal application stage. Staff considered the following factors in evaluating the preliminary proposal:
- The site is within the Taylor Way Corridor Local Area Plan (LAP) boundary. The public process for the Taylor Way LAP has not yet begun.
- Council may consider rezoning proposals before a Local Area Plan is adopted if the proposal meets the community-wide guidelines outlined in the Official Community Plan and contributes to rental, non-market or supportive housing. The proposal meets several criteria in the Official Community Plan by providing a more affordable option for secure rental housing located on a transit corridor.
- The preliminary proposal includes a six-storey building with:
- 199 residential rental units (units ranging from 320 sq ft. to 440 sq. ft., with most at the smaller size.)
- 49 parking stalls & 199 bicycle stalls
- Outdoor amenity space located in the current greenspace
Staff identified the following items that require further review:
- Traffic functionality
- Number of parking stalls
- Number and size of rental units
- Potential community recreation uses in the current green space
- Impacts to privacy and view corridors to properties north of the site
The next steps in the application process include community consultation and staff review to identify issues and technical considerations for the proponent to address.
Council approved the proposal to advance to the next steps of review and consultation.
The purpose of this Road Closure Bylaw is to close a portion of a municipal road allowance that has never been opened and consolidate it with the adjacent Brissenden Park. By changing the land designation, Council can increase the size of Brissenden Park. Council read the bylaw the first time on April 12, 2021.
Council read the bylaw a second and third time.
At the June 28, 2021 meeting, Council requested staff report back on the implications of providing outdoor cigarette butt disposal bins in the community.
Staff informed Council that the first year of a small pilot program covering the provision, maintenance and servicing of cigarette disposal units is estimated to cost $7,000. However, Vancouver Coastal Health expressed concern that placing ashtrays outdoors could create areas where smokers congregate and expose other members of the public to second-hand smoke.
Council directed staff to implement cigarette butt disposal bins in the community for a small pilot program. In addition, the District will support a public education campaign to encourage a general reduction in cigarette waste and connect people to resources to help them quit smoking.
This bylaw was considered and adopted by Council at their July 27, 2021 special meeting as part of the package of Neighbourhood Character Working Group bylaws. Staff identified clerical errors during the August recess and brought forward amendments to correct these errors.
Council read the bylaws a first, second, and third time at the September 13, 2021 meeting.
Council adopted the bylaw.
The next regular Council meeting will take place on October 18, 2021.